Monday

Overcoming Disillusionment

Do not let the badness of man blind you to the goodness of God.

Do not use the suffering of others and the injustices in the world as an excuse to not believe in God - or to not seek Him out.

Often when people say they don't want to believe, it is most likely because they think they don't need God. They don't need faith. They don't need hope beyond themselves. Maybe they haven't arrived at their point of desperation. I have. And maybe it is not even enough. But so far it has been enough for me to weep at the hopelessness of a world who despises their Creator, to cry for my own loveless heart and my own estrangement from God. To realize that the fullness of my life can only be found in God, truly. (Do I sound like a lunatic already?)

People also say they don't want to believe because they think God is cruel. Well, I'd advise such persons to think harder. (Contrary to what most people say, my faith isn't about not thinking and 'just believing' - it is precisely so cool because it incites you to think, to doubt, to seek, to ask, to confront. If you have no faith, you won't be bothered about thinking any deeper than what you assume this life is about.)

See, God is good. He is not cruel. Man is. Don't worry about the children and women and men who suffer disabilities, illnesses, injustices and war. We are called to do what we can, to fight injustice and live righteous lives out of love. But what is out of our hands, be rest assured that God is in control. He is the final Judge. He will bring every good and evil deed into the Light. God is compassionate and abounding in love. He wants all men to be saved and to know His immutable love. Those innocent children, those who have had no opportunity or mental faculty to believe or to know God - don't worry, God is their Deliverer, He is their refuge. He knows their innocence and suffering more than we do. For we are selfish creatures, but God is free from selfishness. If we, fallen and self-centeredness humans, can find in our hearts an inkling of compassion for the underprivileged, the destitute and the handicapped, do you not think that God would feel as we do - only a hundred, thousand, gazillion times deeper?

We are called to do what we can, to be the Light. But what is out of our ability, what we cannot yet understand as well, we must learn to surrender to God - because He is the One who holds our past, present and future.

I have since discovered that I dare not even begin to hope in myself - because I know my own depravity and my capacity for evil. I cannot quite be trusted. But I know now and am fully convinced that God can. His love for me and for us all, demonstrated through the life, death and resurrection of His son Jesus Christ, is enough to prove to me that His faithfulness and goodness is greater than the evil in this world.

God does not cause evil. The devil does, and it is exacerbated by the fact that man himself makes bad, wrong, wayward and sometimes downright evil choices and actions. These actions have dire consequences no matter how big or small.

Good, thoughtful action sown in faith creates wondrous ripples of love, justice and peace. Bad, heartless action sown in greed and self-centeredness creates shattering earthquakes of destruction, sorrow and endless suffering.

Love conquers all. Overcome evil not with lesser evil, but with good. And man cannot truly be 'good' in the deepest, finest, truest sense of the word unless his goodness flows from his Life Source - from God Himself.

I see a great many people today who are stuck in disillusionment - their love has grown cold. Their hearts, instead of beating flesh and pumping life-blood, are now hard as stone - lifeless, loveless. They blame God and see not that much of the suffering and unfairness in the world is perpetuated by selfish, godless, unrighteous men and women who seek their own gain.

Suffering is inconsolable sorrow and inescapable death when it is without hope, faith and love. But suffering can be 'redeemed' when it is faced with courage that comes from a fear of God and not merely a fear of man and of what this world could do to us. That is sweet liberation. Trial and persecution produces in us patience, lovingkindness, faith and greater empathy for those who suffer worse than we do.

Hope in God is not weakness - it is the greatest strength despite our human weakness and depravity. When we acknowledge God, we find our truest identity - and we will not be afraid. We will stand for the Truth. We will fight injustice. We will not be intimidated by evil. We will not be discouraged. We will not lose hope. We will not have loveless hearts. We will overcome disillusion and deception. We will be overcomers above all.

~ J a n i e ll e

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